Videotelling notes

I caught a video as I was heading out to class this morning called What is that? from my wordpress feed courtesy of An idea a day. I was quite taken with it as I recently had my father visiting and recalled a few times I got annoyed with him for asking me a question repeatedly. I was also looking for an activity for my class that would fill in 20 mins or so.

Having seen Jamie Keddie demonstrate video telling I knew that this could work very well with this video. The following is an example script which I managed to think of as I was running the class, bonus :).

There is an old man and young man sitting down.

What do you think they are they sitting on? You often find it in pubic places?

They are sitting down on a bench. The kind you might find in a park. However they are not in a park.

Where do you think they are sitting?

The bench is near the back of a house. In what seems to be the back garden.

What do you think is the relationship between the old man and the young man?

The young man is reading something.

What do you think he is reading? It is something people read everyday.

The young man is reading a newspaper. The old man sees something.

What does he see?

He sees a bird. The old man then asks a question.

What does he ask?

He asks this question a number of times.

How many times does he ask this question?

The young man gets very annoyed and angry.

Why does the young man get angry?

The old man leaves to fetch something from the house.

What do you think he gets? It is like a notebook, people write down their experiences in it.

The old man shows a diary to the young man and points to an entry. He says one word to the young man.

What does he say?

After reading the diary entry the young man does something.

What does he do?

The young man hugs the old man and kisses him on the head.

Why do you think he does this?

So what do we know about the story so far?

Discussion questions after watching:

What is your reaction?
What do you think is the message of the video?
Who has ever gotten annoyed by questions parents ask? Maybe they ask you about computers all the time?

One addition to the video telling I made was to ask the class to summarize what we knew about the video before we watched it. I also shared with the class my recent experience with my dad as a way to encourage them to share their experiences for the discussion questions after the video.

I discovered afterwards that Jamie Keddie is putting up a series of videos titled Taking video apart. Highly recommended and he has some nice concepts like language pulling and language pushing.

What is evident in video-telling is that the video needs a strong story so that the script one makes from it can flow easily, and also it does not even have to be in English as demonstrated by the video in this post.

I did have some practice with video telling as I had copied used Jamie’s Scratch Card story some time previously which allowed me to see the challenges in this kind of activity. So I would recommend doing that before using your own scripts.

Thanks for reading.

2 thoughts on “Videotelling notes

  1. I agree that videos can be used to help build our students’ creativity. I recently saw a music video by Dave Matthews called Hug ( Not only is the song very nice, but the message is quite strong and surprising. I would recommend this video to students in grade 7 or older. One bit of advice though, do not let the students see the name of the video.

    I am confident that this video will get the students to talk and maybe even get them to express themselves in as different manner.

    Have fun,

Penny for your thoughts

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